This call was welcomed by the German society for pig producers (ISN), fearing a total ban on castration unless under anaesthetic, which they called ‘a great worry’.
In the meeting, the European Parliament adopted a report calling for stricter animal welfare rules in the European Union.
The report calls on the Commission to submit plans for animal protection labelling, to urge the strengthening of animal protection in WTO negotiations, and to ban seal and ‘cruelty products’ imports into the Union.
Moreover, the MEPs also called for more possibilities in preventive vaccinating.
However, the House also considered that new rules and labelling requirements could “lead to a decline in the competitiveness of Community production,” and to ‘animal protection dumping’ by third countries. For this reason, the report “urges the strengthening of animal protection within the framework of the WTO” to raise animal welfare standards all over the world.
The report was adopted with a large majority – 565 votes in favour to 29 against and 15 abstentions.
With the topic of castration on the agenda, the Dutch agricultural & horticultural organisation (LTO) pleaded for a total European ban on piglet castration from 2009 onwards. It would create ‘unfair production conditions’ if only the Dutch would do so, spokeswoman Annechien ten Have said.